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Down to Earth (1947) is a musical comedy starring Rita Hayworth and Larry Parks, and directed by Alexander Hall. It is a sequel to the 1941 film Here Comes Mr. Jordan, also directed by Hall. Edward Everett Horton and James Gleason reprise their roles from the earlier film, but Roland Culver replaces Claude Rains as Mr. Jordan.

Plot

Hayworth stars as the Muse Terpsichore who is annoyed that popular Broadwaymarker producer Danny Miller (Parks) is putting on a play which portrays the Muses as man-crazy tarts fighting for the attention of a pair of Air Force pilots who crashed on Mount Parnassus (in mythology, the Muses lived on Mount Heliconmarker). She asks permission from Mr. Jordan to go to Earth and fix the play. Jordan reluctantly agrees and sends Messenger 7013 (Horton) to keep an eye on her.

Terpsichore uses the name Kitty Pendleton and quickly gets an agent, Max Corkle (Gleason), and a part in the show. As the play is being rehearsed, Kitty takes every chance she gets to tell Danny that his depictions of the Muses are wrong. Danny, who has fallen madly in love with Kitty, is soon persuaded to her point of view and alters the play from a musical farce to a high-minded ballet in the style of Martha Graham.

The revised play debuts on the road and is a complete flop. Danny, who is in debt to gangsters who will kill him if the show isn't a success, has no choice but to go back to his original concept. He and Kitty quarrel over this, and Kitty is ready to leave when Mr. Jordan shows up and explains the whole situation. Despite her argument with Danny, Kitty still loves him and decides to save him even if it means damaging her and her sisters' reputation.

Max Corkle hears Kitty talking to Mr. Jordan and realizes this is the same heavenly messenger he had heard about in Here Comes Mr. Jordan. (Corkle makes a reference to the previous movie and tells Mr. Jordan that his old friend Joe Pendleton is doing just fine - and has a wife and two children now.)

Kitty returns to the musical and performs "Swingin' the Muses" the way the producer had intended. When the musical becomes a hit, Terpsichore learns her time on Earth is up and she must return to heaven. After getting Corkle to tell the police about the gangsters, she says she wants to stay with Danny - but she is now invisible to mortals. Mr. Jordan says that she will see Danny again and grants her a vision of their eventual reunion in the afterlife.

Cast



Trivia

  • In the newspaper montage, the third item in the Lyons Den column reads: "Save up your gas money and go over to Danny McGuire's place in Brooklyn. You'll see the current Vanity cover in the flesh." This is the plot for "Cover Girl", Rita Hayworth's previous movie for Columbia, so in effect, the characters of Kitty Pendleton and Rusty Parker are playing at the same time in different venues, even though they're both played by the same person.
  • After Kitty and Danny finish their fight about how the information in the play is all wrong, Hayworth picks up a snow globe from a table and throws it at a mirror. It is the same snow globe that Charles Foster Kane drops when he dies in Citizen Kane. Charles Foster Kane was played by Orson Welles, who was Hayworth's husband at the time.


Remakes

The film was given a sequel in 1980 in Xanadu. Confusingly, the 2001 film Down to Earth is a remake of Here Comes Mr. Jordan (to which this film, as mentioned above, is a sequel), which was also remade into the 1978 film Heaven Can Wait.

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